#1
The article is a year old, but it seems I missed the memo.

"The Loudness War is Over."

http://mixonline.com/mixline/reierson_loudness_war_0802/

The article raises some interesting points. Thoughts, either from your own perspective as a fellow recording nerd, or how you see this playing out in the arena of the consumer?

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#2
Sound on Sound had an article on modern loudness, they argued that while everything HAS got louder, we've actually not really lost any dynamic range.

Here it is: http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/sep11/articles/loudness.htm
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#3
I'm all for the prospect of people having to create better quality mixes rather than just going for volume, it would probably be a good idea to set a loudness standard as mentioned in the article.

As a consumer though, I don't want the CD to die off as a result of any quality improvements that happened as a result.

I have almost 900 CDs and part of the pleasure of listening to music is looking through your collection to find something, then noticing something else that you hadn't listened to for a while and choosing that instead. With downloads, that 'surprise' factor is pretty much lost. I also know of 4 people who have lost their entire collection of downloads due to various technical issues - although with 2 of them it was partly their own fault, and all 4 should have had backups but didn't. Even so, that wouldn't have happened if they'd kept the CDs.

All the artwork and inserts etc are also something that will be lost. Although this probably peaked in the days of vinyl, they are still an important part of any CD album. If downloads truly take over and kill the CD altogether, this part of the album making process will die completely.

Also, better quality mixing should work better on CD than on downloads shouldn't it? I'm no expert, but I'd have thought higher quality mixing would require higher quality file format, therefore it would increase file size. With downloads, they tend to be lower quality formats to save disc space, whereas CDs are usually the highest quality possible and even then don't usually use up all the memory available on the disc.

TL,DR? Go with the higher quality mixing, but keep it on CD.
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#4
^ +1 to this.

Having everything download only is just dumb. I buy music to have a physical copy of it, to hold the disc in my hand and view the cool artwork/inserts. I have never bought music off the internet, nor do I plan on buying music off the internet anytime soon.

The music industry is just opening themselves up to piracy even more if they go with full downloads. Yeah, they'll be able to release higher quality audio, but at the same time - They could still do this on a disc, but they choose not to. They have had the technology since 1999 when the SACD was released. It's basically a DVD with audio on it.
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#5
... and that's the funny thing. With TV and movies, as technology has allowed, we want bigger screens with higher and higher definition. DVD is no longer good enough. We need Blue Ray.

Conversely, we are becoming increasingly satisfied with lower-resolution formats. Even before DVD died, we could have gone to a DVD audio standard of 24 bit 96khz, but instead, we settled for 128kps mp3's.

Go figure.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#6
That said, I personally don't really care about the artwork, physical copy, etc. My entire audio collection (except for my cassettes and LP's) is on my iTunes. Yes, it is backed up (mostly... should do it again soon....), but I have also kept the original CD's - just in case.

Give me a high-quality download with digital artwork and lyrics and I'm a happy camper. I personally wouldn't mind a 24-bit 96khz wav download that would probably be about 100MB per song, except that I'd need to buy a new hard drive and I'd have to be MUCH more selective about what gets put on my iPhone.



CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#7
Quote by axemanchris
... and that's the funny thing. With TV and movies, as technology has allowed, we want bigger screens with higher and higher definition. DVD is no longer good enough. We need Blue Ray.

Conversely, we are becoming increasingly satisfied with lower-resolution formats. Even before DVD died, we could have gone to a DVD audio standard of 24 bit 96khz, but instead, we settled for 128kps mp3's.

Go figure.

CT

Never really thought about it like that, very good point!

Have to admit though, DVD & BluRay gives me hope that the CD as a general format won't disappear, as the next generation of technology has been developed so it is backwards compatible with the CD. Even if it does end up being the secondary format, I think CDs will still be available, even if we do have to play them on our PC because other music players have focused solely on downloads.
Gibson LP Traditional, LP GT, LP Studio, SG Standard x2
Barber Tone Press > EHX Worm >TC Polytune > MXR Custom Badass 78 > EXH Glove > EHX East River Drive > Zoom G3 > TC Spark Mini Booster
Laney VC30
Marshall TSL602
Jet City JCA22H
.
My SoundCloud
#8
I still use cd for dj gigs but that's it. This has more to do with workflow and force decision making prior to a show than anything else.

I can't see any reason to move back to an analogy (hard copy) medium. It's just a pain in the ass. I almost don't use USB anymore it's all about cloud computing. It's just makes life easy. And given Mac scorched earth policy, they will lead the way. Plus it's a playback device it can't interpret the data in more than one way.

In terms of the loudness war. it's done. Everyone know it's stupid and it far less severe.

I'm more interested to see the way consumer levels developments of re-encoding enhancement (Bass boost, EQ adjustment data sent with the digital file. So it sound the way it leaves the studio for everyone.
Refinement of algorithms for finding new music.
Headphone specific mixes.
Game audio development applications i.e real time mixing integration with user experience. (You turn to the right and the guitars right speaker is now in the center of the mix and the vocal left and the keys behind.
Development of lossless audio compression.

GO future GO...